Family Pastimes Max - A Co-operative Game
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- Players work together to get the creatures safely home before Max the cat gets them
- Children learn to use logic, consultation and cooperative decision making in an exciting way
- Awarded the Canadian Toy Testing Top Rating
- For 1 to 8 players ages 4 through 7 years
- Hand-made in Canada using recycled boards and papers, soy-based inks, water based glues and safe paints
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CHOKING HAZARD -- Small parts. Not for children under 3 yrs.
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We must help get the little creatures safely home before Max, the tomcat, catches them. In an exciting way, children learn logic, consultation and decision making. An important issue to discuss is also raised: we don't like Max catching those little ones, yet we recognize that he is a natural hunter. How do we resolve this in our minds and hearts? Let's talk it over. Includes: 12 x 12" board, special dice, 4 movers, 4 cat treats.
Our customers say: "Our kids play Max over and over again!" - Tennessee
Play as friends, not as enemies! Family Pastimes games foster the spirit of cooperation. Players help each other climb a mountain, make a community, complete a space exploration... They never play against each other. After all, the initial impulse to play a game is social; that is, we bring out a game because we want to do something together. How ironic then that in most games, we spend all our efforts trying to bankrupt someone, destroy their armies - in other words, to get rid of one another!
At Family Pastimes we believe that people of different ages and abilities should be able to play side by side, each making their best contribution. We are all there together when we finish the game to take joy in our successes and wonder how we might work together even better the next time we play. Thus, Family Pastimes games will prove to be a friendly form of fun. Socialization, entertainment, academic learning, character growth, etc. - whatever your objectives, we invite you to realize them by cooperative means. We hope you enjoy playing and learning together!
This board game doesn't pit players against each other in competition. Instead, all players work cooperatively to get a bird, a chipmunk, and a mouse (collectively known as Little Creatures) safely home before Max the Tomcat catches them and, presumably, eats them! The dice have single spots--either black or green--on each face. Black spots move Max, green spots move the Little Creatures. Players roll the dice and, in consultation with each other, decide which pieces to move in a game-long effort to foil Max. A refreshing twist on more traditional board games, this is a win/win situation for the players. They will undoubtedly always be able to save at least some of the Little Creatures from Max! Children might need help from an adult in separating the cardboard game pieces. The full-color game board is 12 inches square. --Wendy SlotboomSee all Product description
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Top customer reviews
I want to teach my children about strategy and with the cooperative games that are out; I'd like them to learn to work together in a fun way. My children are too young to even really play Forbidden Island (a game I really enjoy for it's simplicity and cooperative play style).
So I saw on boardgamegeek.com a forum post about children's games and it led me to this publisher who has many other games out.
The premise of this game is to work together to get a mouse, squirrel and bird home to a tree in the yard and not have them eaten by the tomcat "Max". The cat starts on the porch and the animals start 5 spaces ahead in stump by the porch. You then roll 2 dice. A black dot means to move Max. A green dot is to move the animal of your choice. Two black dots: move max two spaces, two green: move an animal one or two *OR* move two animals 1 space.
If Max is catching up, you can call him back to the porch with one of 4 snacks. This will 'reset' Max and he'll try to catch up again to the three hapless creatures.
Players take turn moving the animals and can discuss which animal to move and whether to use a treat.
If you get any or all animals back to the tree: you win. If Max pounces on all three animals, you lose.
Overall, the game has great merits for a child's game. It was produced in 1986, so my hat is off to the game designer who created a coop game back then...when roll and move and trivia games were all the rage.
Overall the components and things are very dated and cheaper material...probably made by a small manufacturer back in 86. You could easily substitute the small punch outs for actual small ceramic/plastic animal pieces to help. The game was only $10, so to expect high quality components for that is a bit foolish on my part.
My kids weren't into it, but i don't blame the game. i think they are just too young to appreciate it right now. It's got a great theme
EDIT: After a few plays, my kids now love this game, as does my wife because the kids love it. I got some wood carvings for the animals and it is a real blast playing with them and letting them help make decisions. We have yet to get ALL the animals back to the tree unscathed, but have a great time doing it.
I am giving this a four star (vs a five) rating only due to the game board being bowed, having to put dots on the dice myself, and the not great quality cardboard treats used to call Max back home. I almost sent it back right away because of these things but am glad we gave it a try!
If you read my other reviews, you know we like to play alternate ways, and one thing we do is use a regular set of dice and just say that the odd numbers represent a move for the cat, while even means the small animals get to go. (Each die counts as one move only separately still).
There is also a Max the Cat game that says it's by the same company for smart phones and tablets. I downloaded and played it today and it was good, but I still enjoy the dynamics of the family around a good board game more. Perhaps that will be good on a trip.
Anyway, back to the game, you try to get the small critters to the tree before Max gets them. You usually have to use some strategy of moving along one or two of the small creatures while pushing the limit and hoping Max bypasses the ones left behind by taking a shortcut. You have four treats to call the cat, Max, back to the porch but he can catch up quick on luck.
It certainly encourages collaboration and logic, looking forward a few moves to make the best strategic choice. It's still something that kids around four can enjoy and understand. Whole the Peaceable Kingdon games are beautifully made and packaged, thus game, even with its poorer quality construction, still intrigues us enough with its 'tight' winning conditions that we have ordered a few more of the games to try.
It's a fun pretty quick play, probably about 12 minutes each game.